I've dreamt in my life dreams that have stayed with me ever after, and changed my ideas: they've gone through and through me, like wine through water, and altered the color of my mind.
Emily Bronte
Wuthering Heights

vrijdag 28 mei 2010

Sterfdag Anne Bronte

Anne had nog maar net haar zus Emily verloren aan tuberculose, toen dezelfde ziekte ook bij haar werd geconstateerd. In tegenstelling tot haar zus Emily wilde Anne wel behandeld worden. In mei 1849 vertrok ze met haar zus Charlotte naar de kust, naar Scarborough, om aan te sterken.

Op 28 mei 1849
161 jaar geleden
 overleed ze

Anne is als enige Brontë niet begraven in het familiegraf in Haworth, maar in St Mary’s Churchyard in Scarborough.

Pets of the Brontes


The early pets are mainly known to us through pictures, and through Emily and Anne’s diary papers. They include Grasper (described in AOTB as an Irish terrier); Rainbow, Diamond, Snowflake (species unknown), and a pheasant called Jasper – possibly these were all wild birds who were fed regularly. Later the family acquired Keeper, the most famous and characterful of the Brontë pets (his fictional equivalent, Tartar in Shirley, is described in ch. 11 as “of a breed between mastiff and bull-dog”); Nero (often called Hero), a hawk, lost while Emily and Charlotte were in Brussels; Black Tom and Tiger (d. 1844), both cats; two geese, Victoria and Adelaide; and a cage bird, Little Dick, mentioned in Anne’s diary paper for 1845. Last of the major pets was Flossy, brought by Anne from Thorp Green in 1843 and painted by both her and Emily. Flossy sired a puppy, given to Ellen Nussey. In his last years Patrick acquired dogs called Cato and Plato. Charlotte’s comparative indifference to animals is evidenced by the lack of references to them in her early letters. In her last lonely years she was touched by the dogs’ display of affection, especially on her returns home.See also Flossy; Flossy Junior; Hero; Grasper; Keeper, Plato; Rainbow; Snowflake; Tiger; Tom; Victoria

dinsdag 25 mei 2010

Anne Bronte and Scarborough

Anne had already been suffering from what was believed to be a cold for the previous few weeks. Over Christmas, her symptoms intensified, and in early January, her father, Patrick sent for a Leeds physician 'who was an expert in consumptive cases'. On January 5th Dr. Teale examined Anne at the Parsonage. He diagnosed her condition as consumption, and intimated that it was quite advanced leaving little hope of a recovery. Unlike Emily, Anne took all the recommended medicines, and responded to all the advice she was given. Her health fluctuated as the months passed, but she progressively grew thinner and weaker. On 1 May, Charlotte wrote to Ellen Nussey, to report on Anne's condition:

""She is very much emaciated, far more so than when you were with us;
her arms are no thicker than a little child's. The least exertion brings a shortness of breath.
She goes out a little every day, but we creep rather than walk. . .'

By this time Anne had decided to make a return visit to Scarborough in the hope that the change of location and fresh sea air might initiate a recovery, and give her a chance to live: indeed, the doctors of the time had said that a

'change of air or removal to a better climate would hardly ever
fail of success in consumptive cases if the remedy were taken in time',

Dr. Teale had particularly approved of Anne's choice of Scarborough. Charlotte initially gave much opposition to the plan, fearing the journey would be too stressful for her ailing sister. However, Anne eventually convinced Charlotte that it was her last hope, and on Thursday, 24 May 1849, the two set off, accompanied by their friend Ellen Nussey, for Scarborough. En-route, the three spent a day and a night in York, where, escorting Anne around in a wheel chair, they did some shopping, and at Anne's request, visited the colossal York Minster. Anne had developed a strong affinity for the Minster from her visits there with the Robinsons when she worked at Thorp Green. Ellen later recorded that as Anne gazed up at the magnificent structure, she said:
"If finite power can do this, what is the . . . ?"

when emotion stayed her speech, and her companions quickly moved her to a less exciting scene.
The small party arrived at Scarborough on the Friday afternoon. Anne was now very weak and frail, but she appeared somewhat revived on being back in the place she so much loved. She gained great pleasure in pointing out the delights of the resort to Charlotte and Ellen. The party had booked rooms in Wood's Lodgings - the establishment where Anne had stayed with the Robinsons some five to nine years earlier. The morning after her arrival, she attended the nearby Indoor Sea-water Baths, and at her own insistence, was left to bathe there alone. However, on her return, she collapsed with exhaustion outside her lodgings. Not to alarm Charlotte and Ellen, Anne did not inform them of this incident until some considerable time later. In the afternoon, she drove herself in a donkey cart on the South Sands, and when Ellen arrived to meet her, she found Anne giving the donkey-boy a lecture on treating the animal well.

'She was ever fond of dumb things, and would give up her own comfort for them'

reported Ellen later.
On the Sunday afternoon, Anne enthusiastically chaperoned Charlotte and Ellen along the Spa Bridge, and the three enjoyed the spectacular open view of the bay from there. Later, overcome with exhaustion, she sat on a seat near the beach and urged her companions to walk on further. It was later this evening that she realised there was no hope left, and that she did not have long to live. She begun discussing, with Charlotte, the propriety of returning to Haworth. Not that she wanted to return for her own sake, she said, but she did not want to leave her companions with the problems, and distress of having to return her lifeless remains home. She spent the rest of the evening sat by her lodgings room window - looking out over the bay, and watching

'the most glorious sunset ever witnessed'

The night passed without incident, but the following morning she was so weak that Ellen had to carry her, like a baby, down the stairs for breakfast, which, for Anne, was a bowl of boiled milk that had been especially prepared for her.
The three spent the rest of the morning in their lounge; Anne sat in her easy chair by the window, looking out over the bay once more; the weather was glorious and the sea as 'calm as glass': she looked 'so serene and reliant', reported Ellen.
'Nothing occurred to incite alarm until about 11 a.m. when Anne announced that she felt a change: she believed she did not have long to live.'
A doctor was called, and Anne asked him
'how long he thought she might live - not to fear speaking the truth, for she was not afraid to die'.
The doctor admitted

'that the angel of death had already arrived and that life was ebbing fast.

She thanked him for his truthfulness . .

Wheelwright family

an English doctor, his wife and daughters, who made the acquaintance of Charlotte and Emily in Brussels in 1842. The reasons for their sojourn there are unclear, though perhaps the large family of daughters (five) and the cost of educating them is the answer. It was the girls’ presence among the small contingent of English pupils at the Pensionnat Heger that began the relationship. Their parents Thomas (1786–1861) and Elizabeth (d. 1882) were clearly regarded affectionately by Charlotte, but they were not individualized in her letters. They were subsumed into the generalized happy, energetic, slightly philistine air exuded by the younger members of the family. The three youngest girls, Frances (1831–1913), Sarah Ann (1834–1900), and Julia (1835–42) are remembered for having been taught piano by Emily Brontë in recreation time, so that she did not lose any of her lessons. These were sessions from which the young girls sometimes emerged in tears. Julia died in Brussels, and it may be that the “primitive and wholly inadequate” (Frances’s words) sanitation at the Pensionnat was to blame (CBL, v. 1, p. 301). Emily (1829–88), as well as being a strong Christian, was a fine pianist, but this was not due to Emily Brontë, for she never taught her.The pupil at the Pensionnat who was closest to Charlotte was naturally the eldest, Laetitia Elizabeth (1828–1911), who seems to have resumed contact ...

Interessante link

The Parlour

The Parlour



Charlotte Bronte

Presently the door opened, and in came a superannuated mastiff, followed by an old gentleman very like Miss Bronte, who shook hands with us, and then went to call his daughter. A long interval, during which we coaxed the old dog, and looked at a picture of Miss Bronte, by Richmond, the solitary ornament of the room, looking strangely out of place on the bare walls, and at the books on the little shelves, most of them evidently the gift of the authors since Miss Bronte's celebrity. Presently she came in, and welcomed us very kindly, and took me upstairs to take off my bonnet, and herself brought me water and towels. The uncarpeted stone stairs and floors, the old drawers propped on wood, were all scrupulously clean and neat. When we went into the parlour again, we began talking very comfortably, when the door opened and Mr. Bronte looked in; seeing his daughter there, I suppose he thought it was all right, and he retreated to his study on the opposite side of the passage; presently emerging again to bring W---- a country newspaper. This was his last appearance till we went. Miss Bronte spoke with the greatest warmth of Miss Martineau, and of the good she had gained from her. Well! we talked about various things; the character of the people, - about her solitude, etc., till she left the room to help about dinner, I suppose, for she did not return for an age. The old dog had vanished; a fat curly-haired dog honoured us with his company for some time, but finally manifested a wish to get out, so we were left alone. At last she returned, followed by the maid and dinner, which made us all more comfortable; and we had some very pleasant conversation, in the midst of which time passed quicker than we supposed, for at last W---- found that it was half-past three, and we had fourteen or fifteen miles before us. So we hurried off, having obtained from her a promise to pay us a visit in the spring... ------------------- "She cannot see well, and does little beside knitting. The way she weakened her eyesight was this: When she was sixteen or seventeen, she wanted much to draw; and she copied nimini-pimini copper-plate engravings out of annuals, ('stippling,' don't the artists call it?) every little point put in, till at the end of six months she had produced an exquisitely faithful copy of the engraving. She wanted to learn to express her ideas by drawing. After she had tried to draw stories, and not succeeded, she took the better mode of writing; but in so small a hand, that it is almost impossible to decipher what she wrote at this time.

I asked her whether she had ever taken opium, as the description given of its effects in Villette was so exactly like what I had experienced, - vivid and exaggerated presence of objects, of which the outlines were indistinct, or lost in golden mist, etc. She replied, that she had never, to her knowledge, taken a grain of it in any shape, but that she had followed the process she always adopted when she had to describe anything which had not fallen within her own experience; she had thought intently on it for many and many a night before falling to sleep, - wondering what it was like, or how it would be, - till at length, sometimes after the progress of her story had been arrested at this one point for weeks, she wakened up in the morning with all clear before her, as if she had in reality gone through the experience, and then could describe it, word for word, as it had happened. I cannot account for this psychologically; I only am sure that it was so, because she said it. ----------------------She thought much of her duty, and had loftier and clearer notions of it than most people, and held fast to them with more success. It was done, it seems to me, with much more difficulty than people have of stronger nerves, and better fortunes. All her life was but labour and pain; and she never threw down the burden for the sake of present pleasure. I don't know what use you can make of all I have said. I have written it with the strong desire to obtain appreciation for her. Yet, what does it matter? She herself appealed to the world's judgement for her use of some of the faculties she had, - not the best, - but still the only ones she could turn to strangers' benefit. They heartily, greedily enjoyed the fruits of her labours, and then found out she was much to be blamed for possessing such faculties. Why ask for a judgement on her from such a world?" elizabeth gaskell/charlotte bronte

Poem: No coward soul is mine

No coward soul is mine,
No trembler in the worlds storm-troubled sphere:
I see Heavens glories shine,
And faith shines equal, arming me from fear.

O God within my breast.
Almighty, ever-present Deity!
Life -- that in me has rest,
As I -- Undying Life -- have power in Thee!

Vain are the thousand creeds
That move mens hearts: unutterably vain;
Worthless as withered weeds,
Or idlest froth amid the boundless main,

To waken doubt in one
Holding so fast by Thine infinity;
So surely anchored on
The steadfast Rock of immortality.

With wide-embracing love
Thy Spirit animates eternal years,
Pervades and broods above,
Changes, sustains, dissolves, creates, and rears.

Though earth and man were gone,
And suns and universes ceased to be,
And Thou wert left alone,
Every existence would exist in Thee.

There is not room for Death,
Nor atom that his might could render void:
Thou -- Thou art Being and Breath,
And what Thou art may never be destroyed.

Emily Bronte

Family tree

The Bronte Family

Grandparents - paternal
Hugh Brunty was born 1755 and died circa 1808. He married Eleanor McClory, known as Alice in 1776.

Grandparents - maternal
Thomas Branwell (born 1746 died 5th April 1808) was married in 1768 to Anne Carne (baptised 27th April 1744 and died 19th December 1809).

Father was Patrick Bronte, the eldest of 10 children born to Hugh Brunty and Eleanor (Alice) McClory. He was born 17th March 1777 and died on 7th June 1861. Mother was Maria Branwell, who was born on 15th April 1783 and died on 15th September 1821.

Maria had a sister, Elizabeth who was known as Aunt Branwell. She was born in 1776 and died on 29th October 1842.

Patrick Bronte married Maria Branwell on 29th December 1812.

The Bronte Children
Patrick and Maria Bronte had six children.
The first child was Maria, who was born in 1814 and died on 6th June 1825.
The second daughter, Elizabeth was born on 8th February 1815 and died shortly after Maria on 15th June 1825. Charlotte was the third daughter, born on 21st April 1816.

Charlotte married Arthur Bell Nicholls (born 1818) on 29th June 1854. Charlotte died on 31st March 1855. Arthur lived until 2nd December 1906.

The first and only son born to Patrick and Maria was Patrick Branwell, who was born on 26th June 1817 and died on 24th September 1848.

Emily Jane, the fourth daughter was born on 30th July 1818 and died on 19th December 1848.

The sixth and last child was Anne, born on 17th January 1820 who died on 28th May 1849.

Top Withens in the snow.

Top Withens in the snow.



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